This year Jonah told me that his "final decision" was to do the triathlon again with the goal of not finishing last place. I am so proud of this attitude! What a trooper! So, in support of his healthy outlook, a few weeks ago we began his run/bike/swim training all over again. Once we started it was obvious that Jonah was way out of shape and would have to work even harder than last year because he hasn't done any sports in months (he can thank his baby brother and our renovation/move for that). So we dug in our heels, and at the advice of Jonah's personal trainer (aka Nana) he began to workout 6 days a week. He has been doing either a bike/run or a swim workout nearly every day.
Jonah is a very special guy. His outgoing personality, dramaticism, and ability to make friends are his trademarks, and his argument and persuasion skills are infamous in our family. He is always brimming with ideas. If one idea doesn't work he has another waiting in his back pocket. Jonah has always been as smart as can be and keeps us on our toes constantly (trying to stay one step ahead of him). Something Jonah is not famous for around here is hard work and attention to detail...he wants everything done quick, fast, and in a hurry. For this reason Jonah is becoming my hero. With a personality like his, training for an endurance sport has got to be excruciating. I know how much it pains him to do the same thing over and over and for a long period of time because I can identify with the feeling.
Last week, 4 weeks into our 6 week training blitz, Jonah decided he had had enough. He told me he didn't want to do the triathlon any more because it was "taking over his life." After homework, chores, and training he barely had any time for hanging out with friends (which is his absolute favorite thing in life). Empathizing with this sentiment, I arranged for one day of playing for a chunk of hours across the street with his buddies, and I called it his "off day." I told him I wanted him to have all the fun he could that day. He did no homework, no chores, no training. He had earned it, and he appreciated it like I had given him a million dollars. The next day at training he had his best bike/run yet! Its amazing what an "off day" can do :)
Another step I took to encourage my little hero was to set up some group training with the Batey Family who's two oldests kids are also competing. They are an athletic family and such wonderful people, and they agreed to help me out. So Tim and Hays took the kids to the pool and for a run and Jonah did a great job! A little company goes a long way to motivating this guy.
With 2 more weeks until the race, Jonah will be working it, making his momma so proud. He has improved a lot in these weeks and that alone is cause for celebration. I really couldn't care less how he performs on race day. My heart is already bursting with pride at my little hero for pushing through physically, mentally, and emotionally in these last few weeks. Jonah you are so strong!
(Sorry I have no pictures to show, our camera got broken by an unnamed child.)